Friday, November 28, 2008

Searching for a marathon

A spring marathon is a definite at this stage. What's still left out there is the where and when. I've a few requirements for the marathon itself, I'm looking for a flat and fast one, the date is important too. Ideally it'd be the middle to end of May but the last weekend of May is out as I'll be heading away on holiday that weekend. That means the likes of Edinburgh and Cork are a no go - Cork is doubly out as it's wouldn't meet the flat and fast criteria. Rotterdam, which is a notoriously fast marathon falls too early in the year so that also isn't being considered. A shame. I did it a few years back, during a heat wave, so I wouldn't mind having another shot at it to do myself justice. Some other time...

To be honest I'm leaning slightly towards a particular marathon at the moment. Germany seems to have a shed load of marathons around that time of the year for some reason and because of that it has to be out in front as the country I could more than likely end up. The leading destinations look something like this:

Hamburg, Germany - 26th April... Falls under the fast and flat category but comes up slightly short on the date. Filed under maybe for the time being.

London, UK - April 26th... Also loses on the fact that the date is in April and it would be super hard to get into. Getting into it would involve me having to find a half marathon before the 1st January and running sub 75 minutes. This would get me into the club championship as I'm still registered with a club in London. I have no half marathons planned though. The other option is to use my one and only contact that could get me in. I may hold out on that favour for another year when I'm not registered with a UK club.

Dusseldorf, Germany - May 3rd... The date is earlier than I'd like but the location is great. Both Ryanair and Aer Lingus fly direct from Dublin, the marathon has a small field (less than 3,000), so the flights shouldn't unexpectedly rise for that weekend. The website is in English, the course seems to be fast, along the Rhine (I like rivers), and allegedly well supported. Everything bar the date is perfect.

Mainz, Germany - May 10th... I'm a bit shy on information here. Looks fast, decent date. Doubtful as I don't know much about it.

Copenhagen, Denmark - May 24th... I would LOVE to do this marathon. Actually, I really just want to go to Copenhagen and the marathon seems like a good excuse. My reasoning here could be something to do with an ex-Girlfriend from Denmark! Is that a good reason to run a marathon there?! The date is perfect as my holiday is the next week so there'd be no guilt about not running and just getting drunk in the sun on holiday. The problem is the marathon itself... I don't know how fast it is, it's two laps, is Copenhagen windy? what are the water stations like? There's bridges to cross, bridges mean wind and a climb, don't they?

Regensburg, Germany - May 24th... Again Germany, again the date is perfect, but I have no clue where Regensburg is! I'm guessing East Germany, one of the pictures on their site looks east German. The site is all in German so my info on it is limited. The lack of information I have on this makes it look unrealistic that I'll be there in 2009.

You'd probably think from reading that it's Copenhagen that I'm leaning towards. Well, as much as I want to, you'd be wrong. The current favourite is Dusseldorf. Besides the fact that it falls earlier than I'd like it to, the marathon looks champion. It'll be another week or so before I decide on one so if anyone has any info on any marathons in Spring let me know. It doesn't have to be on one of these mentioned above, but if anyone has run some of them please give some feedback.
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